Before a sellout crowd of 7,820 Sunday afternoon at Wolff Stadium, San Antonio was limited to just five hits in a 3-2 series-opening loss to Northwest Arkansas.
The Naturals jumped out to an early 2-0 lead on right-hander Jesse Scholtens Sunday, beginning in the first when Erick Mejia drove in Nicky Lopez with a groundout to second.
In the top of the third, Kansas City Royals rehabber Salvador Perez made the score 2-0 when he lifted Scholten's 1-0 pitch just over the wall in left center. The Royals' catcher finished his first rehab assignment contest with the Naturals 1-for-3 with a run scored.
San Antonio got one back in its half of the third against righty Glenn Sparkman, but wasted a chance to do much more. With the bases loaded and just one out, Josh Naylor put the Missions on the board with a single to left. Sparkman (1-1) escaped further trouble by retiring both Fernando Tatis Jr. and Austin Allen to end the threat.
Scholtens (1-1) tossed six solid frames, during which he fanned six and did not issue a walk. Northwest Arkansas took advantage of his departure in the seventh, plating an important insurance run off right-hander Colby Blueberg.
The Missions made the Naturals sweat it out in the ninth, slicing the deficit to just one with Kyle Overstreet's one-out, RBI-single to center off Franco Terrero. However, a pitching change ended any threat of another Missions comeback as Jake Newberry (1st save) preserved the Natural lead by retiring both Webster Rivas and River Stevens.
San Antonio (6-4) resumes its three-game set against Northwest Arkansas (4-6) Monday with a special 11:05 AM first pitch. Right-hander Cal Quantrill (0-1, 1.86) will take the hill for the Missions, while the Naturals counter with southpaw Foster Griffin (1-0, 1.00).
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.